Grand Gesture for Friends

Pictured Above: Críona Ni Dhálaigh unveils the new bench on the Grand Canal.

Pictured Above: Críona Ni Dhálaigh unveils the new bench on the Grand Canal.

On Thursday 17th September, at Mespil Road Bridge, Grand Canal, An tArdmhéara, Críona Ní Dhálaigh, unveiled two benches dedicated to the Friends of the Grand Canal.

For the past eight years, these volunteer groups have been turning up, regardless of the weather, to help keep the canal banks clean and to create a better waterside environment.

The results of their dedication are there for all to see, as longer and longer stretches of the canal have been transformed, from underutilised wastelands, into a fantastic amenity, which can be enjoyed by everybody.

An tArdmhéara, acknowledged the Trojan work carried out by the volunteers and said “I would encourage everyone to share this civic responsibility, individuals and businesses alike, and to take the opportunity to work together to ensure that the Grand Canal remains a valued amenity.”

At the unveiling, An tArdmhéara also launched the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Programme, an initiative designed to encourage businesses, large and small, to get involved and to “integrate social and environmental concerns into their mainstream business operations on a voluntary basis.”

The aim of the CSR is to promote the use of the Grand Canal to its fullest potential. Involvement can take the form of a number of sponsorship opportunities, or businesses can organise work parties to participate in voluntary canal clean up days.

So if you are a business owner or manager, looking for a team-building idea with a difference, this could be the perfect plan. Give your staff a regular, fun, day out and improve the environment at the same time.

You can find out more about volunteering or sponsorship opportunities at a website dedicated to all things Grand Canal.

Alternatively go to the Inland Waterways Association of Ireland (IWAI) website. They can be found at

By Jennifer Reddin